USB hardware on the fritz
I have an Iomega Zip 250 USB and a SanDisk ImageMate CF (model SDDR-91) CompactFlash card reader attached to my computer running Mandrake 9.2 and Windows XP Pro. Naturally they work fine in Windows, but they're causing all sorts of trouble in Linux. The Zip drive can't decide whether it wants to be /dev/sda4 or /dev/sdb4, so it'll go from one to the other every two or three boots. (It's actually rather hard to predict.) And the CF reader--forget about it. Sometimes it'll be detected as /dev/sda, but then it thinks it's a hard drive, not a removable drive. Can't actually mount anything with it, apparently.
On top of all this, my DVD-ROM and CD-RW drives (both internal, IDE, on the secondary channel) switch places every now and again. Sometimes the DVD-ROM is /dev/cdrom and the CD-RW /dev/cdrom1, other times the CD-RW is /dev/cdrom and the DVD-ROM /dev/cdrom1. Or if my system is having a really bad day, one of these drives will suddenly become /dev/scd0 (and the other /dev/cdrom, or perhaps even /dev/hdd!).
Really, I want my system to pick a configuration and stick with it. (Editing /etc/fstab every session gets old fast.) I really don't need either the Zip drive or the CF reader while running Linux, so is there any way I can disable the devices without unplugging them? And will disabling these drives help alleviate the perhaps related CD drive problems?
(FYI: I used to run Fedora Core 1, and this also happened a lot there.)